Matt Phillips strikes early as Blackpool ease past Sheffield Wednesday

Blackpool made short work of beating Sheffield Wednesday at the third time of asking to ease into the FA Cup fifth round, where a short trip down the coast to Everton awaits them. David Moyes was among those watching the game, and as a manager who takes a keen interest in these things,he will certainly have noted that while some of the faces have changed, Ian Holloway's side still have the eye for a goal that surprised so many in the Premier League last season.

"I thought we looked like a foreign team, we were that good," the Blackpool manager said. "We didn't give them much of an opportunity at all but that can happen when your first two shots go in. That left the crowd a bit shell-shocked and I don't think they ever recovered."

The Seasiders have already lost one cup tie at Hillsborough this season, on penalties in the Carling Cup first round back in August, so they were in no mood to take any chances this time. After being held on their own ground the visitors were two goals to the good within a quarter of an hour, thanks more to expert finishing than any real control of the game. Sheffield Wednesday had in fact created the first scoring opportunity but when Ryan Lowe failed to take advantage Matt Phillips showed him the way a couple of minutes later at the other end.

Making use of a rebound from a Lomana LuaLua effort that hit Liam Palmer full in the face and knocked the Wednesday player over, the striker, who scored a hat-trick in the last round at Fleetwood, shot before Rob Jones could close him down beating Stephen Bywater from the edge of the area. The goalkeeper possibly saw the attempt late but he was comprehensively beaten seven minutes later when LuaLua added a second. Breaking from halfway then checking at the angle of the penalty box, the former Newcastle forward was allowed space by Danny Batth to look up then curl a perfectly flighted shot into Bywater's top left corner.

Wednesday's attempts to get back on term were mostly limited to set pieces and it took an excellent save from Matthew Gilks to keep out a Jones header from a corner on half an hour. Réda Johnson made a strong run and put in a threatening cross just before the interval, though a stretching Chris Sedgwick was unable to turn it in at the far post.

Blackpool's passing was superior, as might be expected of a Championship side, even if they tended to overcomplicate in the final third or take unnecessary risks. "They are a class act, they made our passing look laboured," Sheffield Wednesday's Gary Megson said. "They took their goals brilliantly, and that changes games."

Kevin Phillips and LuaLua in tandem were proving a tricky handful for a League One defence, although the former missed the sort of chance you would normally put money on him to accept when Neal Eardley's long ball from the right wing put him one on one with Bywater at the start of the second half.

Five minutes later Blackpool put the tie beyond Wednesday's reach with another exquisite finish, Ludovic Sylvestre powering on to Matt Phillips's splendidly improvised backheel to stride into the area and place another shot unerringly into Bywater's top left corner.

While the goalkeeper cannot have enjoyed being exposed so frequently, his central defenders spent the whole evening being pulled out of position by Blackpool's movement and abundance of attacking options. Matt Phillips ought to have made it four before the end, and taken his Cup tally to five, but after making the run to anticipate LuaLua's nonchalant flick, he missed the target when all the work seemed done. It was no consolation whatsoever, but Julian Bennett was just a tiny bit closer with Wednesday's best, indeed only, effort of the second half.

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